Muslim Rights Concern, on Sunday, accused President Bola Tinubu of sidelining Muslims, especially from the South West.
MURIC Executive Director, Prof Ishaq Akintola, made this allegation in a statement.
Akintola said President Tinubu’s ministerial appointments should reflect some improvement in the status of Muslims in Southern Nigeria.
According to him, “Only two or three Muslims can be identified among all the ministers nominated from the South by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu. This is disappointing because whereas Christians from the region ganged up against him, the Muslims rallied to his support.
“Of particular importance is the fact that MURIC began the campaign for the emergence of a Yoruba Muslim president as early as 23rd February, 2021 with our visionary and rhetorical caption ‘2023: Why Has No Yoruba Muslim Ever Occupied Aso Rock? – MURIC’.
“Equally didactic is the fact that MURIC based the campaign on the fact that Yoruba Muslims had been under religious persecution, political marginalisation and socio-economic ostracisation because no Yoruba Muslim had ever ruled Nigeria since independence. This was the argument we used to persuade the North to support our struggle and they gave us their full support.”
The MURIC boss said this explains the bold moves of the 12 Northern governors and other pre-primaries manouvers, which produced Tinubu as the presidential candidate of the ruling APC.
He said, “But the story so far has not impressed Nigerian Muslims, north or south. Complaints have flooded the Muslim community. Tinubu’s appointments have not in any way allayed the fears of Muslims in the south west. Equally alarming is the fact that northern scholars have started reminding MURIC that with only 2 Muslims out of about 17 ministerial appointments for the south, the pendulum still continues to swing the other way.
“We therefore call the attention of President Tinubu to the need to rectify things before all ministerial appointments are concluded. Look behind you, Mr. President, and see how you emerged as president. It is done everywhere.”
Akintola added that it is the time Muslims emerged as ministers from Oyo, Ogun and Osun as Ekiti and Ondo already have Christian governors and Christian deputy governors (Christian-Christian tickets).
“Heaven will not fall if Muslims emerge as ministers from there. Give us at least 4 ministers from the South West. One or two Muslim ministers from each of the south-south and south-east sub-regions will not be out of planet earth. After all, Christians are known to have emerged as ministers from core Muslim zones in the past.
“Our Muslim brothers from the east feel what we feel in the south west. They should also be considered. Lagos can have a Christian minister because both the president and the Speaker of the House of Representatives are from there. There is agony in our hearts as we reach out to you from a region that has 17 states but all 17 states are ruled by 17 Christian governors. What crime has Southern Muslims committed?”